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Sharing knowledge on how to communicate product sustainability information through trainings

  • Published on December 16, 2021

Over the past few months, the One Planet network Consumer Information Programme has organised three specific trainings to help different actors improve their communication around product sustainability claims

“Consumers are changing their behaviour, with searches for sustainable goods increasing globally by 71% since 2016.”

This is how The Economist Intelligence Unit summarizes consumers behaviour change towards more sustainable products in its whitepaper “Eco-awakening: Measuring global awareness, engagement and action for nature”.

As an answer to this growing demand, companies feel incentivised to make sustainable claims regarding their products and services. However, many of these claims are proven to be misleading, vague, or even false.

Adopting such practice, commonly known as “greenwashing”, can not only have legal implications, but may also damage consumer confidence and trust in a business not to mention the serious consequences for the environment and society.

Hence, with the growing phenomenon of greenwashing over recent years and the lack of a standardized universal framework to tackle the issue, the One Planet network Consumer Information Programme has developed the Guidelines for Providing Product Sustainability Information.

This guide is an essential tool to help businesses to make effective and reliable environmental, social, and economic claims, the Consumer Information Programme is also engaged in working closely with companies to assist them through this important transition.

Distancing from the “one-size-fits-all” approach and realising the many challenges that different sectors and/or regions face, the Consumer Information Programme also provides specific trainings to support stakeholders in the best application of the Guidelines. During these workshops, attendees can analyse and learn how to improve the way to communicate sustainability claims, and benefit from experience exchange with peers.

Over the past few months, the Programme has held three specific trainings: one for actors from the Africa continent, one for Small and Medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in English, and one for SMEs in French. The trainings gathered representatives from the industry, standard labelling bodies, NGOs, consultancies, and government representatives.

For the upcoming year, more training workshops are planned, and will be enhanced by two new developments of the Consumer Information Programme: the supplement Guidelines for Providing Product Sustainability Information in E-commerce and the Supplement to the Guidelines for Providing Product Sustainability Information focusing on chemicals in products.

So, stay tuned if you would like to participate in one of the next trainings by subscribing to the Consumer Information Programme newsletter. You can do so by entering your e-mail address at the box on the bottom of our Programme page.


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